How the Magician’s Illusion is Performed, and the Effects
Recently, I wrote three Substack articles alleging the fact that grass-roots Republicans are “having the wool pulled over their eyes” by the Georgia Republican Party “Corporation,” starring CEO, Josh McKoon and a select supporting cast of questionable actors.
The first two center around the manner in which the Georgia Republican Party “corporation” has used what I term a “sleight-of-hand,” designed to USURP and CONCENTRATE power belonging to a relatively large group of “grass-roots” Republicans, known as the “State Committee” under GRP, Inc. rules, and place that authority into the hands of a small, much more centralized group of “executive” Republicans, known under those same rules as the, “State Executive Committee.” And apparently, that “trick” (yes, I call it a “trick” because it is apparently an ongoing, intentional deception), has been utilized to suppress the voice of grass-roots Republicans for many years inside the Republican Party.
But now we see the prestidigitator’s magic and how it is used to concentrate power at the state party level. We also see the same deception employed to allow small numbers of “executives” to control the “party” at county levels (I use quotation marks around the term, “party,” because it’s really not a political party at all, but a corporation masquerading as a political party).
How the Magician Performs the Illusion
The ploy is to convince a relatively large group of unsuspecting Republican faithful, at state and local levels respectively, to believe that the process of formulating, adopting and promulgating major policy initiatives and actions should rightfully fall under the authority of a small group of executives, whereas, unbeknownst to the faithful, the large group of grass-roots Republicans, of which they are members, is actually entitled to control those activities BY LAW. The importance is that, in a republican form of government, the larger the number of individuals who affect governmental policy, the more accurately that policy will reflect the true will of the people. Conversely, the smaller the number of individuals who affect governmental policy, the more accurately that policy will reflect the true will of selected special interests. The trick to which I refer is so simple that I am amazed so few, including myself, ever saw it before.
Fig. 1 (below) depicts the Georgia law empowering the “formulation, adoption and promulgating of political party rules and regulations.” Notice the references to “state executive committee” or “county executive committee.” Those terms are not capitalized in the law. That is because they are not proper names of committees in the law. They are simply descriptions of what those committees do. The “state executive committee” is that committee empowered under law to “exercise state-wide jurisdiction,” and to “formulate, adopt and promulgate rules and regulations…governing the conduct of conventions and other party affairs.” That committee must exist in the party structure, or the organization cannot be considered a lawful “political party.” No other political party committee is empowered by Georgia law to perform the activities associated with these purposes. Analogously, the committee referred in law as the “county executive committee” is that committee, empowered to perform those same operations, relative to the “state executive committee,” only at the county level. For the sake of simplicity, although the same discussion pertains to both levels of political party operations, for my purposes today I will confine the discussion purely to the state level.
Given all that I just showed you, let me ask you a question. What if the existing state Republican Party rules essentially borrowed the term, “state executive committee,” from the law, and appropriated that term to NAME a certain SUBCOMMITTEE, one comprised of a relatively small number of executive members? What if no one noticed that the term in question, “state executive committee,” which is intended to DESCRIBE a certain LARGE, statewide committee empowered under law, were borrowed and used as the NAME for a relatively SMALL subcommittee, one with no intended lawful power to “execute” the operations of the LARGE committee from which the name were taken?
…the larger the number of individuals who affect governmental policy, the more accurately that policy will reflect the true will of the people. Conversely, the smaller the number of individuals who affect governmental policy, the more accurately that policy will reflect the true will of selected special interests.
If that might occur, knowing human nature as we do, we might expect that individuals comprising the referenced SMALL subcommittee might find themselves tempted to “formulate” certain policies lawfully reserved for the LARGE committee, would we not? Now, realize, if what I describe were not at least a regular occurrence in politics, USURP would not be a word. The circumstance I just described is the very one Georgia Republicans are witnessing in their state Republican Party. A subcommittee NAMED, “State Executive Committee,” using capital letters, is apparently operating under the USURPED authority of the lawfully empowered “state executive committee” under Title 21.
To better see this, I devised the diagram you see in Fig. 2
In the left-hand column, Fig. 2 illustrates the committee structure at the state level, lawfully-empowered under Title 21, compared to the true and correct respective committee NAMES of those committees under Georgia Republican Party Corporation Rules in the center. Under those rules, the “State Committee” is that committee to which the law refers as “state executive committee.” The “state executive committee” has statewide jurisdiction, as well as all authority to “formulate, adopt and promulgate rules and regulations…governing the conduct of conventions and other party affairs.”
Now, compare Fig. 2 to the following diagram in Fig. 3, demonstrating a different, “inverted” relationship involving the “state executive committee” in law, which after a calculated “switcheroo” leaves it corresponding not to the “State Committee,” but instead to the “State Executive Committee” in the rules.
Because the NAME of the small “State Executive Committee,” in the rules, is the same as the DESCRIPTION of the large “state executive committee” in the law (State Committee in the rules), the similarity in the NAME of the one against the DESCRIPTION of the other creates the impression that the “State Executive Committee” possesses powers it does not lawfully possess.
So, why am I spending my weekend to tell you all this? Why is this important?
Aside from the fact that it is rainy and cold outside, one reason I’m telling you this is to show you how the Georgia Republican Party “State Executive Committee” recently usurped the authority of its parent “State Committee” in a recent notification to prospective Republican Presidential candidates seeking to place their names on the 2024 Republican Presidential Preference Primary ballot coming up in the Spring. You
will see in the notification in Fig. 4 that Josh McKoon, purporting in this instance to be the Chairman of the Republican Party (as opposed to the CEO of the Georgia Republican Party Corporation), represents that he speaks for the “State Executive Committee of the Georgia Republican Party pursuant to Section 21–2‑193 of the Official Code of Georgia.” McKoon also represents to the reader that the State Executive Committee has the authority to formulate, adopt and promulgate the rules he presents by which that same committee will decide which prospective presidential candidates will appear on the ballot in the Spring. Apparently, however, McKoon has no authority to do either. McKoon has no apparent authority to represent the State Executive Committee in this notification because, as I have confirmed with others, he called no official meeting to discuss and vote on promulgating such a notice, much less on formulating or adopting its policies for that purpose. Furthermore, even if he had brought together a meeting of the State Executive Committee for that purpose, that committee is not empowered to formulate, adopt and promulgate the policies of this notification in any event. The authority for that task resides solely with the “state executive committee” in law, which goes by the name of “State Committee” in the “party rules.” (Once again, I am forced to place “party rules” in quotation marks because, apparently, there are no true “party rules” in existence, only corporate rules.)
Now, I previously called these usurpations of authority to your attention in two of the three Substacks I cited at the outset. My purpose in calling them to your attention again today is to validate everything I have written previously, and do so in light of an expert parliamentary opinion written in answer to these questions by the esteemed professional parliamentarian, Kirby Glad, whose credentials I present below. Mr. Glad lives in Utah, and is therefore immune to political pressures from anyone involved in the Georgia Republican Party, or perhaps even myself. In other words, Mr. Glad, whose bio and credentials are below, is a disinterested, unbiased expert. I commissioned Mr. Glad’s work, but had no involvement in writing any part of his opinion.
I hired Mr. Glad to ask him two basic, parliamentary questions. Referencing the following:
(2) the published rules of the Georgia Republican Party, and
(3) Chairman McKoon’s notification to prospective Republican Presidential Candidates (Fig. 4 above),
I asked Mr. Glad:
1. Whether the “State Executive Committee of the Georgia Republican Party,” referenced in Chairman McKoon’s notification, which is a committee described in the linked rules document, is the same or a different entity than the “state executive committee” as that term is defined and used under OCGA 21–2, and,
2. Whether the “State Executive Committee” in GRP, Inc. rules has authority to set qualifications for candidates to be listed on the ballot in the presidential preference primary referred in Chairman McKoon’s notification, including the requirement for prospective candidates to make a party donation in light of OCGA 21–2‑198.
I discuss below several passages from Mr. Glad’s opinion. Here is the first:
Thus, according to Mr. Glad, using nationally-recognized parliamentary best practices, in his notification to presidential candidates, Chairman McKoon incorrectly quotes OCGA 21–2‑193, which as we will see will turn out to be a material error.
As I have stated numerous times and ways, when the law uses certain words to comprise a purely DESCRIPTIVE term, when those words are CAPITALIZED as they are in the party rules, they become a NAME of a committee, a nonequivalent to the DESCRIPTIVE term in the law.
According to Mr. Glad’s expert opinion, the State Executive Committee referenced by Chairman McKoon in his notification has no inherent, lawful authority to enact rules and regulations. That function, as we will see, is reserved for the “State Committee.”
That is because…
So, let’s understand something that is very important here. According to Kirby Glad, an industry-recognized and certified parliamentary expert, in promulgating this notification, not only did Chairman McKoon lack the statutory authority he claimed to possess, but the State Executive Committee which McKoon purports to represent is not even the committee referenced in the authorizing statute! Do you see the magician’s trick here? Do you see how certain individuals have usurped authority from a governing committee and appropriated it for their own use?
Let’s keep going:
Mr. Glad is telling us that, as a purely “executive committee,” Chairman McKoon’s State Executive Committee can only execute policies as defined and assigned by the governing, “State Committee.” The State Executive Committee has no authority in law to formulate material party policies, much less adopt and promulgate those policies. Did the “State Committee” formulate the rules governing the policy by which Chairman McKoon’s State Executive Committee would determine ballot access in the 2024 presidential preference primary? According to several State Committee members, no such meeting to discuss this notification was ever called, in fact, not for 2024, not for 2020, in fact, never to their knowledge. The procedure to which I refer is, as they say, “the way it’s always been done.” Do you see how “Boss Hog” all this is? It must stop. The members of the Republican State Committee must take back their lawful authority. That the people do not assert authority over their governing institutions is exactly why America is on the brink of destruction.
Here, Mr. Glad makes it clear that the State Executive Committee possesses no authority to devise the policies promulgated in Chairman McKoon’s notification, only carry out policies authorized by the much larger and statewide, State Committee.
Thus, the authority for Chairman McKoon’s notification above (Fig. 4) belongs solely to the larger State Committee, not the smaller State Executive Committee. Without the State Committee acting to devise these policies, or somehow delegating that authority to the State Executive Committee, according to Mr. Glad, in crafting the presidential ballot access notification Chairman McKoon could only have used personal authority, which would be insufficient to the task.
Regarding to the “voluntary” qualifying fee of $25,000, referencing the controlling statute in Georgia law, 21–2‑198, Mr. Glad makes it clear:
Here is OCGA 21–2‑193:
I have previously discussed the presumption that a “voluntary contribution” would be unlawful to solicit from prospective presidential candidates under 21–2‑198. The following is how Mr. Glad dealt with this questionably-lawfully policy:
Finally, Mr. Glad summarizes his opinion in the following blanket finding:
Thus, according to the learned, expert parliamentary opinion of Mr. Kirby Glad, and quite possibly any opinion reasoned by a prudent and unbiased observer, it appears that the policies formulated, adopted and promulgated in Chairman McKoon’s October 27 NOTICE TO CANDIDATES FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, bear no substantive authority whatsoever, and result solely from the usurpation of lawful authority residing solely under the purview of the Georgia Republican Party “State Committee.”
That the people do not assert authority over their governing institutions is exactly why America is on the brink of destruction.
Now, do I believe the members of the State Executive Committee will abuse the power usurped from its governing committee as it deliberates later today (Sunday, November 12, 2023) over the names to appear on the ballot in the Spring presidential preference primary? Well, not in any way that I would find overly concerning. Frankly, any attempt by committee members to, for example, keep the name of Donald Trump off of the Georgia ballot, would be tantamount to slitting their political wrists in the minds of grass-roots Republicans. So, that is not likely to happen.
As the Republican State Executive Committee prepares to meet this afternoon, I raise this issue to point out yet another material breach by the elected Georgia Republican Party leadership respecting the laws under which party operations are established and regulated. Because the laws of Title 21 are not optional, but mandatory, as party leadership proceeds on a path toward a national election, its policies in conducting election operations advancing outside of the law’s requirements, win or lose, any and all candidates whose names appear on those ballots stand a chance of encountering justified election contests, which they could easily lose. It has crossed my mind that the scenario I depict is so egregious, that losing these elections might even be someone’s plan.
The “Republican Party” under Title 21 of Georgia law is not even publicly registered with the Georgia Secretary of State. The Georgia Republican Party “corporation” is registered under Title 14, the laws regulating corporations, rather than Title 21, the laws regulating elections. The rules under which the Georgia Republican “party” operates are corporate rules under Title 14, not party rules under Title 21. Under Title 14, corporations are extended no right to ballot access.
So, here we see a conclave of corporate officers meeting to decide which names should appear on a statewide ballot over which they apparently have no lawful control. If you were a competing candidate against any Republican in 2024, and you understood you lost to an unlawful candidate under Georgia law, would you not contest your loss in court? That is the risk of all this continuing on its present course. Yes, odds are great that Donald Trump will have his name on the Spring primary ballot, placed there by the State Executive Committee. But odds are also great that any victory he, or perhaps other Republicans might experience running for office under tainted auspices, could easily be overturned in court. Do you doubt me?
Many thanks to Mr. Kirby Glad, expert parliamentarian, whose full opinion follows.
Thanks for reading Hank’s Substack! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.